Tag Archives: epcot center

Epcot – from lunch until sore feet take over

14 Jun

Back to where we left off.  We have just exited Animal Kingdom and our plan is to find food!  Fast!  We didn’t realize how hungry we were until we were on our way out and stumbled upon these …

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Yes!  It’s a cupcake shaped like a Meerkat!  So cute – and so not what we wanted to eat at that moment in time … lucky meerkat!

Back in the car and off to Epcot … but instead of heading to the front, we headed for the Boardwalk resort area, thinking we might grab a bite to eat there.  We parked in the visitor parking for the Boardwalk Resort and Villas and headed in from there.

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This is one resort I’ve never stayed at … but I’d like to try it sometime as it seems to have raving fans.  Today, however, nothing much was going on either at the resort or along the Boardwalk and the one restaurant that had a menu that we were really interested in was not open for lunch.  It was still pretty chilly, and the wind blowing across the water was just raw.  Out of the wind, the sun was shining and it was a beautiful day.  Since the boardwalk was really, really dead, we just continued walking to the “back door” of Epcot Center.

The really nice feature of all the Boardwalk area resorts, which include the Swan and Dolphin and Yacht and Beach Club, is that you can walk from there to either Epcot or Hollywood Studios.  In addition, there is a nice path around the water that serves as a bike path, jogging trail, and people-watching venue.  Again, unless people are staying over there, they don’t tend to enter Epcot from this direction, so lines are pretty short and entry is fast and easy.  That said, you are on the “back side” or the World Showcase side of Epcot, so in the morning it’s a bit of a walk to the front where things are open.  Coming in at around 1pm as we did, however, means that the World Showcase is open and there is lots of activity to be found.  Plus, since we were looking for food, this was EXACTLY where we wanted to be … and we let our noses lead us straight to France.

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We were there during the Flower and Garden Festival, which is one of my two favorite times to visit Epcot, the other being the Food and Wine Festival, which runs from September 27-November 11 this year.  Amazing topiary creations are all over the park during this festival, and I’m going to bore you with photos galore.  But even better?  The food booths … and our first stop, in France, netted us this yummy ratatouile tart:

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Admittedly, it doesn’t look like much – but it TASTED glorious!  And it hit the spot!  We wished we’d bought two … but Britt was a little hesitant about it, having no idea what ratatoulie was, so we went on the safe side this time around.

The way the food booths work is a little different from the normal food operations … you stop and purchase a ticket (or tickets) for what you want to try, and then present the ticket as payment for your order.  If it’s crowded, this is a hassle.  But remember, it was cold out by Florida standards, although by now it was close to 60 degrees out, so no crowds today!

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We kept walking around the World Showcase … next stop, the booth in Japan:

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Here we sampled the Yakisoba Pan:

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And the Chirashi Hanazushi:

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Both dishes were excellent, although I preferred the “Zushi” – the noodles on bread were a little too carby for me, although it did make them really easy to eat!  As we continued on our quest we found ourselves in …

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The good old USA – here are some of the topiaries we found as we explored the American Pavillion:

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We skipped over this food booth, and the Italian one as well, since they weren’t serving anything we hadn’t tried before.  But I do have the menus, so if you’re interested in seeing them, comment on the blog and I’ll post them up.  In the meantime, check out the detail on the Lady and the Tramp topiary in Italy:

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I may be raving too much for you about the genius of Disney’s artists and designers, but come on – who DOES this?  A coat hanger for a dog tag .. brilliant!  And the use of the different varieties of plants to create the different textures on each of these sculptures had me in awe all the way around the park.  It was amazing.  On to Germany …

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This was our second favorite stop of the day – France being first.  We sampled the bread pudding (very rich – almost TOO rich – really glad we were sharing)

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And the meatloaf – which was not what we expected, but was SO good!  Point of note – it contains pork.  There was a lady blowing up behind us because the meatloaf contained Pork and had “ruined her”.  Honestly?!?!  If you have dietary restrictions, check the ingredients of ANYTHING you order – even if this had been “American style” meatloaf, chances are pretty good that it might have contained some pork … vent over – here is the picture of the yummy sandwich that looked … well … not so yummy.  (glad we braved it)

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Kinda looks like Spam doesn’t it?  But WOW – it was amazing, and if I could have purchased that mustard, I’d have a cabinet full of it right now.

At this point, we were so full we were bursting.  So we decided to pass on China, Norway (the food that is, we did ride Maelstrom), and Mexico figuring if we got the munchies we could always come back.  That is, we almost passed on Mexico.  Brittany developed a craving for horchata as we walked by the Mexico pavillion, and we were stunned to find that it is not served in Epcot Center.  Since we couldn’t get horchata, we got coffee instead – at the Mexico pavillion.  Here’s the funny (funny ha ha in our minds, anyway) part – she got an iced caramel latte and I got an iced latte with Baileys – Italian style coffee with Irish liquor in Mexico … where else but Disney??

Right next to the coffee stand was our good friend Mike!  We hadn’t seen him in years…

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And his buddy Sully …

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Spaceship Earth, the Dancing fountains surrounded by towering topiaries – and HERE is where all the people are!!!  I guess it kind of makes sense … Future World is largely indoors, so you can stay out of the frigid Florida air, lol.  That said, there were no Fast Passes left for Soarin’, Test Track, or anything else on this side.  But that’s okay, we’re not here to stand in line today, having only one day to do as much as we can, and so we headed for what used to be called “The Living Seas” and is now called “The Seas with Nemo and Friends”.

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We happily sank into a clamshell and set off to “find Nemo” while our feet throbbed and rested and then wandered in to the building to explore the tanks.  We probably spent close to an hour in there and we found ourselves fascinated by these rescued Manatees:

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They had been struck by boats and one was missing a fin, so are not able to live in the wild, but they seemed pretty happy here!

Back out to the Journey into Imagination Pavillion to see Michael Jackson in Captain EO

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And on to the butterfly tent … where all the fairies live and you can watch butterflies hatch from their cocoons.

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We were getting pretty tired and thirsty by now and our dogs were barkin’, if you know what I mean, so we started heading back towards the World Showcase on our way back to the car. Along the way, here’s what we saw:

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someone is not afraid of Nala …Image

the happy family

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Rafiki and Simba

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look who is lurking by Test Track!

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this is my favorite shot!

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My 4×12 garden takes me forever to plant – I can’t even imagine attempting this!Image

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Red glass poppies along the “yellow brick road” to “Oz”.  At the other end, we found the UK pavillion and stopped for some rose lemonade and peach iced tea.  And guess who else we discovered – these were the BEST!

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major points for creativity on the placement of Peter … Image

As we walked back past France, it crossed our minds that we might want more ratatoulie, and then it uncrossed them and we kept strolling out to catch our “Friendship” back to the Boardwalk Inn and Villas.  We headed for the car, abandoning the plan to try and catch the Rock-n-Roller Coaster at Hollywood Studios, opting instead to head back to the timeshare for a rest.  Magic Kingdom will be the next stop, after a little exploration of the Polynesian Resort … and its open until 1am, so we’d better rest up!

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